Healthy Intestines
for a Healthy Life


age-well.org > The Digestive System > healthy intestines for a healthy life


This well used joke is an anecdote about the importance of healthy intestines:

Who's the Boss?

eating fruit gives you the necessary roughage to facilitate the transition of waste matter through your intestines

Who is the Boss?
When God made man, all the parts of the body argued over who would be boss. The brain explained that since he controlled all the parts of the body, he should be boss. The legs argued that since they took man wherever he wanted to go, they should be boss. The stomach countered with the explanation that since he digested all the food, he should be boss. The eyes said that without them man would be helpless, so they should be boss.

Then the asshole applied for the job. The other parts of the body laughed so hard at this that the asshole became mad and closed up. After a few days… The brain went foggy, the legs got wobbly, the stomach got ill, and the eyes got crossed and unable to see. They all conceded and made the asshole boss.

This proved that you don’t have to be a brain to be boss…Just an Asshole.


practicing certain yoga poses can help keep your intestines working

Well we all know that, don't we?

I'm sure everyone who reads this page already knows this tired old joke. Joke it may be, but it is funny precisely because there is a lot of truth in it.

You don’t need to be a brain to see that a efficiently working digestive system is crucial to your overall health. Besides the role which the asshole (as it is called in the above joke) which is undeniably important, there are other internal organs which play an equally important role in the digestive system.

Central to this is the intestines which have to process approximately 80 tonnes of food over our lifetime, excrete that which is not digestible, channel what the digested food to the parts of the body which need it and perform functions in the body’s defense systems which are essential to our health.

The digestive system is often overloaded through overeating, lack of physical activity, and an unvaried and low-fiber diet. This can be exacerbated by taking medication over the long term. All these can have an accumulated negative effect on our sensitive digestive system and bowel movements.

With increasing age the digestive system functions less effectively and it is even more important to take good care of your digestive health.


Avoid Constipation

In order to avoid constipation and also avoid liquid bowel movements, your intestines need sufficient water and fiber.

If you don't drink sufficient water, your bowel movements will be small, hard and similar to small round marbles, difficult to expel and sometimes sticking together and blocking the anus so nothing can be excreted. Sufficient water combines with fiber (roughage) to produce soft and formed bowel movements. It takes meat between 2 and 6 days to travel from your mouth to your anus and be extreted. At the other end of the scale, vegetables take only two hours to pass through your system.

If you are eating a balanced diet, you can expect to pass a bowel movement at least once a day, but the frequency of your bowel movement depends on your diet. So if you are eating a vegetarian diet with a lot of fiber you will probably have more than one movement a day.

If you are change to a raw food diet or one that is high in vegetable content, expect your stools and any flatulence to smell more stongly at least at first due to the interaction of the vegetable matter with the bacteria in your intestinal tract and the fact that this diet will cleanse the colon. Extra dark stools are usually caused by iron in the diet or from green vegetales.

As one ages the muscles in the rectum don’t work as efficiently and constipation can become more of a problem. Therefore, it is even more important to drink adequate water and enough fiber as well as to get enough exercise, particularly walking to help get the intestines moving.


How Yoga Can Help

Yoga can help to strengthen the muscles in the rectum and bowel as well as to aid digestion and stimulate the passage of digested food and fecal matter through the different parts of the digestive tract and facilitate excretion.

The pose below is one that you can adopt to release trapped wind when you are in a situation where you can lie down undisturbed to exercise gently. It is also an ideal pose for bed-ridden patients.

this yoga pose helps you eliminate gaz

Lie on your back on a firm surface keeping the palms of your hands down and close to the body. Bring the heels and toes together and keep them loose. The whole body must be straight. Look up to the ceiling and breathe normally.

  • Lift one knee up towards your chest.

  • Pull the knee towards the chest and stomach without pulling the ankle.

  • In that posture, ask the patient to relax all the muscles and continue to breathe normally. Maintain the posture for 6 to 8 seconds.

  • Release by returning the leg back to its original position.

  • Repeat with the other leg, pressing against the chest and stomach.

Besides helping to release trapped wind, this posture helps digestion by activating the pancreas and other organs within the abdomen. It stimulates the abdominal muscle and intestines, eliminating constipation.

It also loosens the hip joints and strengthens the back as well as making it more flexible.

This position is also ideal to activate the lymphatic system, alleviate tiredness and cramps, as well as prevent venous thrombosis, especially in bedridden or post-operative patients.

Yoga is an ideal way to assist you in keeping your digestions working well. Follow this link to see some yoga positions to help improve your digestion and prevent constipation.

Looking after your intestines will help you live a longer, fitter life. No one can live forever but living a life filled with vitality and energy will give you the will to live to a ripe old age and enjoy the process.

I saw the text "Health Takes Guts" on some publicity I picked up about keeping your intestines and digestive system healthy and thought it was appropriate. It does take guts to be healthy. If your digestion is bad, you feel bad and will find it difficult to lead a healthy lifestyle. There are simple ways you can improve your intestinal health, and start living life to the full. Follow the links below to learn more about these.


Zest for Life

When you have health on your side, age should not prevent you from reaching your goals

Your zest for life has a lot to do with your digestion - especially when this does not function as smoothly as you would like. The intestine reacts sensitively to an unhealthy diet and lifestyle with various symptoms, including: an irritable bowel, sluggishness, bloating, or diarrhoea. Healthy intestines are necessary if you want to get the required nutrients from your diet. That’s why it’s important to actively support the functions of the intestine and to maintain and encourage natural digestive health. First of all, it is essential you consider your diet and lifestyle, because with a healthy diet and a healthy lifestyle you can prevent the risks of intestinal disease.


When you are fit and healthy the sky's the limit!



(Source: ABC of yoga.com, COLLECTIVE WIZDOM.COM, the volkner turning system)


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